Thank you Cabarrus County Convention & Visitors Bureau for sponsoring this post.
As the time comes closer for our big overseas adventure, we have been trying to soak up the beautifulness of our local destinations. So I was incredibly excited to have a chance to explore Cabarrus County with my little team.
I personally had never heard of this wonderful place. Cabarrus County is an under-the-radar southern destination, and it was an easy drive for us. They also have an amazing airport which makes it easy to get to, no matter where you are! When I started to learn about it, I noticed that most people think of Cabarrus County as the place “Where Racing Lives” because of the Nascar races that take place there. Let me assure you, this place has so much more to offer for each member of the family! In fact, there is so much that we had to choose only a few of them to do in our set time!
We sat down as a family and went through the destination guide that you can find here.
It took us a while, but we finally narrowed it down! We were ready for our weekend Adventures! Here is how we did it:
Where To Stay
They had so many options, for all the possible budgets! We stayed at the Homewood Suites which is located within minutes of all of our activities! We’ve loved Homewood Suites for a while now, but this time they really outdid themselves! The staff always had a smile for us and were ready for anything that we might need. Our suite was roomy and clean, with a kitchen and a full-size refrigerator!
Breakfast was amazing! The ladies in the kitchen always talked to me in the morning and mentioned how pretty I looked, as I walked towards the hot coffee! Always ready when I needed a boost.
So I’m going to say that our Hotel most definitely made our weekend much better than it would have been!
Where To Play
Charlotte Motor Speedway-
After our delicious breakfast, we went out for our first adventure. Something we all had never done before! With 4 little boys, you can imagine the thrill of the morning as we got to see close up and in person, the very place that has hosted Nascar races for more than 50 years!
We got to see some cars racing from the skyboxes and the boys were glued to the glass! Then we got to learn a lot about the history of the track, visit the Performance Racing Network (PRN) studios and the boys pretended to be commenting the races. After that, they even got to feel and hold a winner’s cup! As if that wasn’t enough, we headed out with our guide and visited The Dirt Track where the Monster Trucks have all the fun! Of course, the boys now want to go back when the races are on. I can’t really put into words the excitement and the thrill! This needs to go on your family’s bucket list for sure!
Reed Gold Mine-
Now, this was an amazing adventure! One that you need to experience with your kids. Reed Gold Mine is the place where the first documented gold find happened in the United States. The boys got to learn about a young boy that went out on a fishing adventure and found a 17lb gold nugget! This boy didn’t know the meaning of his discovery, he was just a boy on a Sunday adventure! This simple story developed into one that will always be retold and remembered!
We walked on the beautiful trails and went inside of the mine shaft, and felt like we were all the way back in history! It was such an awesome experience for the boys. After that, the moment they had been waiting for. They got to pan for gold! And they found some! It was such a fun time for all of us!
Before we left, the boys had another history lesson with daddy inside of their incredible World War I Traveling Exhibit. They saw a flag of the time, and the different uniforms among other things.
Sea Life Charlotte-Concord Aquarium-
I know I keep saying that you have to do this, but you really have to do this! Equipped with their favorite sea creature shirts, they woke up early and were jumping on our bed to get ready for the aquarium! It reminded me of that scene from a movie when a certain clownfish was going to his first day of school!
The aquarium is at the Concord Mills Mall so that was amazing! Momma got to do a little shopping and then we literally dove into the fun and learning (see what I did there?)
The entire time, they were making all these fun faces! They made sure to tell me all the sea creature facts they could possibly remember and learned a few more! We got to pet some Beautiful starfish and saw so many many sea creatures up close!
Sharks! Momma they have sharks! The beautiful Shark tunnel was definitely a favorite. We also got to do a behind the scenes tour that was very informative. They all decided that in addition to being paleontologists, they also need to be Marine Biologists.
I just love to see their minds turn and new dreams be born.
The Speed Park At Concord Mills-
Speaking of dreams being born. This park is the perfect spot to not only get their wiggles out but also pretend that they are some famous Nascar driver as they drive around the tracks that are separated according to ages and heights, so that way, all of them got to experience it! Even the shortest one.
They also went down the Giant slide 700 times and giggled all the way down each time! It really was so fun. The staff was very friendly and were patient to teach the boys how to have the most fun!
Where To Eat
Of course, no adventure is complete without the experiences of the local food! For this weekend, we decided to ask the locals where we should go, you all know how we believe that learning from locals is always the best way to learn! Here are the places we tried:
The Smoke Pit-
Our new friend at the Motor Speedway told us that we could not leave the area without trying The Smoke Pit. I’m so glad he did! If you want to experience the real North Carolina BBQ goodness, then this is the place to be. Everyone was so welcoming and they helped us choose the best food ever! They also have an awesome Kids menu so the boys were in absolute heaven!
Funny story: a few days after we were back home, we let Jo Jo sleep with us because he wasn’t feeling well. the next morning, he opened his eyes and asked if we had any Smoke Pit leftovers or if we could please go there for breakfast. So you know that they really made an impression even with the little guys!
On our way out of town, we stopped by Kannapolis, a beautiful and charming town with many interesting things to see! It’s also home to the North Carolina Research Campus which is the inspiration for Restaurant Forty-Six, named for the number of chromosomes in the human genome. You know us science lovers had to make a stop there! The place is very inviting and contemporary. They have a nice menu with many healthy and delicious options. We all enjoyed our lunch and left with happy tummies.
Concord is a beautiful charming town, so we took the boys to have a nice walk through the small shops and the streets, there are some gorgeous churches and also a very old Coca-Cola sign on a wall, that was recently restored! I hope you go there and send me a picture of your family on that wall.
To end our walk, we ended up at the Cabarrus Creamery where we meet two of the loveliest locals! A brother and a sister who made us feel at home. All the boys got to taste and chose ice cream and she made me a delicious brownie sundae with hot fudge that she had just made herself! Does that not sound like a dream? But it’s true! Our favorites were the lemon slice ice cream and of course the homemade hot fudge. We sat there for a very long time, telling stories of our families and enjoying the wonderful rainy day from the inside.
So that was our adventure! Cabarrus County has so much to offer that I know each family can make a different adventure and have so much fun! Make sure to visit this website to learn much more about Cabarrus County. The locals are ever so friendly and welcoming. Another amazing source of Information and fun is the Cabarrus County Visitor Center. Make sure to have this place be your first stop! They really help you with making your adventure unique and perfect for your family.
Thank you so much for reading through and becoming a part of our awesome weekend adventures! I want nothing more than to hear that you are having some adventures too!
I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.